New Planning regulations on extensions

Under Government proposals, a three-year exemption from planning permission requirements, people who wants to build larger and bigger house extension, up to 8m long for detached homes and and 6m for others, can now do so, without Planning Permission. Building Regulations still apply for any building works, house extensions, garage conversions, loft conversions.

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Permitted Development

Tradesman unpaid for Dumfries House restoration work

A tradesman claims the he fitted 40 hand-made doors and windows at the Georgian mansion in Ayrshire and he hasn’t been paid for the works.


SEVEN years ago, Prince Charles announced plans to rescue a stately home in Ayrshire and kickstart the local economy.

He formed a charitable trust to raise £45million to save 250-year-old Dumfries House from being sold off at auction – and put £20million from his own foundation into the pot.

But a craftsman who helped the prince realise his dream of renovating the 18th century building claims he is now being forced out of business – because he is still owed payments from the main contractors.

The main contractors, Paisley-based Taylor and Fraser, were awarded the contract to restore the buildings and landscape the 2000-acre Knockroon estate in time for the official opening but subcontracted much of the work out to tradesmen.

Jim, who owns JJ Building Refurbishment in Airdrie, won a £43,000 contract to fit the doors and windows and hoped it would earn him a Royal Seal of Approval to give his business a much-needed boost.

But the 53-year-old claims that Taylor and Fraser, who handed him the contract in February, still owe him around £10,000.

Jim and his eight-strong team completed the job in time for the opening in April.

He said: “I was over the moon when I got the chance to work at Dumfries House and put all my other work on hold for it.

“They asked me to supply doors and windows before the opening and I nearly killed myself meeting those deadlines.

“We all worked our fingers to the bone because we thought it could be the start of great things for the business.

“I was hoping for the Royal Seal of Approval because they were delighted with the work and praised it to the hilt.

Refurbishment of the Palace of Westminster

The cost of refurbishing the Houses of Parliament – Palace of Westminster is estimated at almost £ 3 billions and the repairs should take about 5 years. The renovation works includes asbestos removal from the Grade I-listed building and replacing the plumbing and electrics.

London Palace of Westminster

The palace covers eight acres, and has 1,100 rooms, 100 staircases and three miles of corridors, spread over four floors.
‘We need to shut the building, let the builders in, pull the innards out and gut it.’ There were reports of leaking toilets, ceiling stains and crumbling masonry.

Building an office in the garden

Building a Garden Office can offer a working space area if converting an existing room in the house is not available. Working from home is quite popular in London, it’s estimated that one in eight of us works from home, and using the living room or kitchen table is not always comfortable and efficient.A Garden Room could be the right solution.

The cheapest way to achieve an outdoor office is to buy a ready made shed. With wireless phones and internet, it could be feasible, however it has drawbacks.

garden shed

In a wooden shed it can be too cold or too hot, wireless connections can fail, its not soundproofed and not safe to keep office equipment over night.Using an extension lead to draw power from the main house it’s also dangerous.

The second option is to have a custom built Garden Office. There is no need to apply for Planning Permissions and it can be used during winter too. The walls, roof and floor can be built using the same technique as for a house extension, this means that everything will be insulated and a solid building. Electrical power points and electrical heating will supply the electricity and heating needs. An internet and phone line will installed in parallel with the electrical work. The interior of the Garden Office can be customised, from custom made desks, cupboards, shelving to lighting, windows and colour scheme.
Garden Office

For safety, an independent security alarm can be installed, security lights and a CCTV system.The office furniture can also be built to be used as storage.

Contact our Garden Office Builders for a free Consultation.

Garden ponds

garden pond

Garden ponds can be dangerous.

I have a concrete curved pond – 430cm x 280cm approximately at widest parts in the corner of a small North London garden. The ground around slopes upwards to fences and lawn. With the advent of a toddler in the family, I want it broken up, removed, & remaining ground left with necessary drainage, soil, turf/seed, & the slope managed, probably with existing rocks from an old rockery.
Any advice on how how to proceed ?

An emergency service operator has been recognised in the first BBC 999 Awards for saving the life of a one-year-old child.

Milo Jelly had fallen into a garden pond at his home in Lincolnshire when his father Andrew’s back was turned. Mr Jelly called 999 in panic and spoke to Lisa Harrison at the East Midlands Ambulance Service.

One-year-old who fell in pond helped by 999 operator

Council flat in Kensington, West London

An ex council flat in Kensington, West London, located next to the High Street Kensington tube station is on sell, for the price of £949,950.

 Kensington Curch Street block of flats

The five bedroom flat, is located in London’s most expensive area,Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. With neighbours such as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Madonna, Nigella Lawson, Royal family of Saudi Arabia, the Sultan of Brunei and ambassadors from Norway, Japan, Russia, France , Elle Macpherson and Lakshmi Mittal, the property demands a high premium.

House extension builders in Muswell Hill

House extension & Loft/Garage Conversions builders in Muswell Hill

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Muswell Hill builders cover North West London area, including Wood Green, Turnpike Lane, Bounds Green,Southgate, North Finchley, East Finchley, Highgate, Crouch End, Alexandra Park, Hornsey, Muswell Hill, Stroud Green.

Our builders, electricians,carpenters, roofers, plumbers and other tradesmen, cover all aspects of Home Improvements, Building Works, Renovations & Refurbishments, Roofing, Plumbing & Electrical projects. From Bathrooms, Kitchens, installations to Loft Conversions, House Extensions, Garage Conversions.

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